Barack Obama said yesterday that he's considering visiting American troops and commanders in Iraq over the summer. Though McCain offered to accompany him on a joint trip, Obama declined the invite saying, “I just don’t want to be involved in a political stunt.”
The trip is part of his plan to take a foreign trip after he secured the Democratic presidential nomination, though no details have been set, he says, “Iraq would obviously be at the top of the list of stops."
The last time Obama had his passport stamped in Iraq was January 2006 as part of a Congressional delegation to the Middle East. Obama's been criticized for this lapse recently in an ad that called attention to it.
McCain responded to the possible trip by saying he was “glad to hear that Senator Obama is now, quote, considering a trip to Iraq.” McCain has a countdown on the issue saying, “It’s long overdue. It’s been 871 days since he was there.”
Would a joint trip be a stunt or a show of unity? Is McCain right to be counting how long it's been since Obama was there? Is a visit an important part of the campaign?